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Raymond W. Locke Sr., NFTA employee
Aug. 28, 1938 -- Feb. 9, 2006

Raymond W. Locke Sr., a 40-year employee of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, died of a heart attack Thursday in his Buffalo home. He was 67.

A lifelong Buffalo resident, Mr. Locke was a bus driver for 20 years and a traffic checker for another 20 years for the NFTA, and ranked number one on the authority's seniority list.

He was known for his many stories from the bus route, including some stemming from the two days he spent stranded aboard a Metro Bus on Bailey Avenue during the Blizzard of '77. He finally resorted to using cardboard ads inside the bus to block snow seeping in the windows.

"It was something he never forgot," said his wife of 45 years, the former Kathleen Thomas.

He was an aficionado of classic cars, collected Danbury Mint models, and owned a 1955 Ford. He previously served as a loan officer for the NFTA credit union.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Locke is survived by a daughter, Theresa Oleski of West Seneca; three sons, Raymond Jr., Kevin and Scott, all of Buffalo; two sisters, Elizabeth Tumiel of Derby, and Carol Tucker of Cheektowaga; and eight grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Monday in St. Stephen's Catholic Church, Elk and Smith streets, after prayers at 9:15 in Pietszak Funeral Home, 806 Clinton St.

Burial will be in St. Matthew's Cemetery, West Seneca.


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